Building Healthy Communities

 

Community Health & Wellness Indicators:

 


Initial work by the California Center for Rural Policy (CCRP) identified the need for a common set of community health indicators to help guide and assess outcomes resulting from improvement efforts in the region. Community health indicators are measures that act as barometers for underlying community health. In the fall of 2009, CCRP initiated a year-long process of facilitating a Working Group to develop a set of community health indicators known as the Rural Community Vital Signs.
The outcomes of this project are a set of 48 community health indicators with existing data and a “wish list” of 44 indicators that would be useful for measuring community health, but currently lack a good or readily available data source for all four counties (Del Norte, Humboldt, Trinity, and Mendocino). The Vital Signs developed in this project link to numerous issues in various arenas (social, health, environment, and economy) and are intended to track trends and inspire action initiatives aimed at improving health in the region.

by Jessica Van Arsdale, MD, MPH, Terry Uyeki, MSEd, Connie Stewart, Jenna Barry, Alissa Leigh, Gwyn Mahony, Liz Hannig, Jennifer Oliveros, Launa Peeters-Graehl, and Kali Patterson

 


Del Norte County and the adjacent tribal lands (DNATL) is one of fourteen places in California participating in Building Healthy Communities (BHC), an initiative of The California Endowment (TCE). The goal of BHC is to “support the development of communities where kids and youth are healthy, safe and ready to learn.” This report provides a set of community health indicators intended to give a snapshot of the past and current conditions in Del Norte County and to help guide and assess outcomes resulting from improvement efforts. Community health indicators are measures that act as barometers for underlying community health. Through regular assessments using a common set of indicators, communities can determine if policy and systems changes are making a difference.

by Jessica Van Arsdale, MD, MPH, Terry Uyeki, MSEd, Connie Stewart,
Jenna Barry, Alissa Leigh, Gwyn Mahony, Liz Hannig, Jennifer Oliveros, Launa Peeters-Graehl, and Kali Patterson

 


(contains 20 core indicators plus contextual indicators selected from the below)
Del Norte County and the adjacent tribal lands (DNATL) is one of fourteen places in California participating in Building Healthy Communities (BHC), a ten-year initiative of The California Endowment (TCE). The goal of BHC is to “support the development of communities where kids and youth are healthy, safe and ready to learn.”
This report presents a recommended set of 20 core community wellness indicators developed through a community based process. These core community wellness indicators are intended to give a snapshot of the past and current conditions in Del Norte County and to help guide and assess outcomes resulting from improvement efforts. Community health or wellness indicators are measures that act as barometers for underlying community health. Through regular assessments using a common set of indicators, communities can determine if policy and systems changes are making a difference.

 


Community Health & Wellness Issues:

 

Del Norte County and the adjacent tribal lands is one of fourteen places in California participating in Building Healthy Communities, a ten-year initiative of The California Endowment. The goal of BHC is to “support the development of communities where kids and youth are healthy, safe and ready to learn” (more information at The California Endowment. The California Center for Rural Policy is assisting the initiative with data and evaluation needs. The following reports, briefs, and protocols provide information directly and indirectly related to the initiative.

Childhood obesity has become one of the most pressing public health issues. An extensive body of research shows that being overweight or obese is associated with multiple diseases and high health care costs. Del Norte County and the adjacent tribal lands is one of fourteen places in California participating in Building Healthy Communities, a ten-year initiative of The California Endowment. The goal of BHC is to “support the development of communities where kids and youth are healthy, safe and ready to learn.”6 One of the big results the initiative is aiming for is a decrease in childhood obesity. This report was prepared to provide some baseline information about childhood obesity in Del Norte County.

Jessica Van Arsdale, MD, MPH

 


Application of “zero tolerance” policies have led to a dramatic increase in school suspensions and expulsions across the country. These exclusionary discipline practices have sparked concern as a growing body of research provides evidence that frequent suspensions and expulsions are associated with negative outcomes for students, families, schools, and communities. Moreover, there is evidence of discipline disparities along racial, gender, and socioeconomic lines with students of color, males, and low socioeconomic status receiving a disproportionate amount of suspensions. There is no evidence to support the supposition that these subgroups of students have higher rates of misbehavior or violence. Rather, research suggests that the observed discipline disparities may be due to lack of teacher training in classroom management skills, cultural competency, and possibly “conscious or unconscious racial and gender biases at the school level.”

Jessica L. Van Arsdale, MD, MPH


Del Norte County and the adjacent tribal lands (DNATL) is one of fourteen places in California participating in Building Healthy Communities (BHC), a ten-year initiative of The California Endowment (TCE). The goal of BHC is to “support the development of communities where kids and youth are healthy, safe and ready to learn”. One of the big results the initiative is aiming for is an increase in school attendance. This report was prepared by the California Center for Rural Policy (CCRP) to show trends in school attendance in the Del Norte County Unified School District.

Jessica Van Arsdale, MD, MPH

 


A Community Food Assessment for Del Norte County and Adjacent Tribal Lands[/caption]A Community Food Assessment for Del Norte County and Adjacent Tribal Lands
The direct connection between a healthy community and healthy food makes it critical to understand the Del Norte and Adjacent Tribal Land’s food system. A food system includes all of the people and processes that are involved in taking food from seed to table. The quality, cost and availability of the foods in every community – at stores, schools and hospitals – are determined by the food system serving it.

by Danielle Stubblefield, MS and Connie Stewart

 

 

 


Del Norte County: A Look at Educational Achievement Building Healthy Communities (BHC) is an initiative of The California Endowment (TCE). The goal of BHC is to “support the development of communities where kids and youth are healthy, safe and ready to learn.” Del Norte County and adjacent Tribal lands is one of the fourteen places embarking on this ten-year initiative with TCE. As part of the planning process, the California Center for Rural Policy (CCRP) prepared this report of past and current educational achievement data for Del Norte County.

by Jessica L. Van Arsdale, MD, MPH, Director of Health Research; Alissa Leigh, Research Assistant; and Jennifer Oliveros, Research Assistant


How children travel to and from school can significantly impact their health as well as traffic congestion and safety, air quality, and the school environment. Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is a National, State and Local movement to make it safer for children to walk and bike to and from school. In 2012, The Del Norte Local Transportation Commission coordinated an effort to assess travel to and from school among a sample of six schools in Del Norte County. Parent and classroom data were collected using forms from the National Center for Safe Routes to School (521 parent surveys were completed representing students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade). This report was prepared by the California Center for Rural Policy (CCRP) to provide some baseline information and policy recommendations for SRTS in Del Norte County.

by Jessica L. Van Arsdale, MD, MPH, Director of Health Research, The California Center for Rural Policy at Humboldt State University & Nanette Yandell, MPH, Public Health Policy Coordinator, Building Healthy Communities, Del Norte and Adjacent Tribal Lands


From the brief:
Repairing harm, rather than punishing violators of law, is the focus of the justice theory that has become known as restorative justice. The goal is to remedy the damage or injury to the victim–via apology, community service or restitution– instead of punishing the offender. Use of restorative justice and restorative practices have been employed with success in the school system as a way to address rule violations and prevent disciplinary problems. They have been effective in reducing violence and disobedience while increasing respect and productivity in the classroom–especially in more close-knit rural areas.

by Melissa Jones, Esq, Health Policy Analyst


Two seemingly different models of school systems aim to increase student success, graduation and continued education in the face of low test scores and high dropout rates in the four-county area of the Redwood Coast Region in California. Throughout the region schools and community organizations are discussing these important educational indicators because the indicators can impact the children’s current and future health. Relationships, both peer-to-peer and teacher-to-student, have a positive impact on these outcomes and interventions that promote learning and well-being are important.

by Melissa Jones, Esq., Health Policy Analyst


Since teenage truancy frequently stems from social issues, its remedies include mental health and social services, health care access and behavioral counseling and tutoring– as well as law enforcement. Truancy programs are typically school-based, community-based or court-based, depending on who spearheads, funds and staffs them. But they all use similar procedures: strong attendance policies, counseling, well-trained staff and continuing internal evaluation.They also all feature collaboration, between community resource providers and the school district/county office of education, and between government and community services.

by Melissa Jones, Esq., Health Policy Analyst


Helping Address Food Insecurity in the Redwood Coast Region Through Increased Food Donation
At the close of business, what happens to the salads and sides behind glass at the grocers deli counter? Or the tasty unserved leftovers from a catered lunch meeting? Despite the growing number of hungry people in the Redwood Coast region, edible food is ending up as compost or in the trash. Food is going by the ton into the waste stream, but this can be decreased if people donate rather than throw out edible food.

by Melissa Jones, Esq., Health Policy Analyst


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


From the report:
This report provides a profile of rural poverty and its health impacts. It contains a review of the literature exploring the relationships between poverty and health with a focus on rural poverty and child poverty. It also contains an analysis of U.S. Census data showing the geographic distribution of poverty in the Redwood Coast Region and variation in poverty by place, age, family structure and race/ethnicity. Results from RHIS are presented to show the association between poverty and numerous health indicators. The report concludes with a discussion about implications for programs, policy and research based on dialogue with rural community leaders.

By Jessica Van Arsdale, MD, MPH; Launa Peeters-Graehl, MA; Kali Patterson, BA; Jenna J. Barry, BA; Adrianna Bayer, MA


Del Norte County and the adjacent tribal lands (DNATL) is one of fourteen places in California participating in Building Healthy Communities (BHC), an initiative of The California Endowment (TCE). The goal of BHC is to “support the development of communities where kids and youth are healthy, safe and ready to learn.” For more information about BHC please visit The California Endowment. In order to support the work happening in DNATL, this report was created for the Healthy Klamath Coalition to provide some baseline data about Klamath residents.

by Jessica L. Van Arsdale, MD, MPH, Director of Health Research


CCRP was granted a contract with Del Norte County to develop a healthcare provider recruitment and retention plan. The plan includes demographics of Del Norte County with GIS maps, results of community input through surveys and meetings, a summary of best practices from other rural areas, as well as an assessment of the economic impact of the health care system on the County.

To create the plan, CCRP worked with Research Associates, Martin Love (CEO of the Humboldt-Del Norte IPA, Foundation for Medical Care) and Erick Eschker, PhD (Associate Professor and Chair, Dept of Economics, HSU and Director, Index of Economic Activity for Humboldt County).

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